Revisiting the Entrepreneurial Commercialization of Academic Science: Evidence from “Twin” Discoveries

34 Pages Posted: 21 Dec 2020

See all articles by Matt Marx

Matt Marx

Boston University - Questrom School of Business

David H. Hsu

University of Pennsylvania - Management Department

Date Written: December 2020

Abstract

Which factors shape the commercialization of academic scientific discoveries via startup formation? Prior literature has identified several contributing factors but does not address the fundamental problem that the commercial potential of a nascent discovery is generally unobserved, which potentially confounds inference. We construct a sample of approximately 20,000 “twin” scientific articles, which allows us to hold constant differences in the nature of the advance and more precisely examine characteristics that predict startup commercialization. In this framework, several commonly-accepted factors appear not to influence commercialization. However, we find that teams of academic scientists whose former collaborators include “star” serial entrepreneurs are much more likely to commercialize their own discoveries via startups, as are more interdisciplinary teams of scientists.

Institutional subscribers to the NBER working paper series, and residents of developing countries may download this paper without additional charge at www.nber.org.

Suggested Citation

Marx, Matt and Hsu, David H., Revisiting the Entrepreneurial Commercialization of Academic Science: Evidence from “Twin” Discoveries (December 2020). NBER Working Paper No. w28203, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3753110

Matt Marx (Contact Author)

Boston University - Questrom School of Business ( email )

595 Commonwealth Ave
Boston, MA 02466
United States

David H. Hsu

University of Pennsylvania - Management Department ( email )

The Wharton School
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6370
United States
215-746-0125 (Phone)
215-898-0401 (Fax)

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
2
Abstract Views
47
PlumX Metrics